Benedict Pulsifer

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Benedictus Pulsipher

Also Known As: "Benedict Pulsifer"
Birthdate:
Birthplace: Essex,England, England, United Kingdom
Death: November 10, 1695 (56)
Ipswich, Essex, Massachusetts, United States, Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts, United States
Place of Burial: Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Benjamin Pulsipher and Mrs. Benjamin Pulsipher
Husband of Suannah Pulsipher
Ex-husband of Unknown (Possibly elizabeth) Pulsipher
Father of John Pulsifer; Richard Pulsipher; Elizabeth Prescott; William Henry Pulsipher; Susannah Pulsipher and 7 others

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Benedict Pulsifer

this site suggests a possible father from Ireland!!!!!!


Benedict Pulsifer was born in England circa 1639. He immigrated to Ipswich MA circa 1659, with first wife and two children. His first wife, possibly named Elizabeth, died 7/16/1673. He later married Susanna Waters in 1674. Benedict died on 4/10/1710, in Ipswich. He was prominent among MA Protestants, even living across the road from John Winthrop. There is a Pulsifer family tradition that he fled from England to MA due to the restoration of the Catholic Monarchy under Charles II. The same tradition states that he had some part in the capture and execution of Charles I, thus the need to flee. It is known that Charles II condemned to death a number of "Regicides," but the name Pulsifer does not seem to be among those which history has remembered. It is said that his oldest son, Jonathan, claimed that the family name in England was "Pulford," and was changed to Pulsifer to avoid prosecution, but neither is that name listed as a Regicide. Pulsifer researchers have not yet proved, or disproved, such traditions. His son, Benedict Jr., was among those whose actions caused an Indian War, as I type this I can't remember the name of the war. The same son later was killed or captured during Gov. Phipps attack against the French and Indians (1690 I think) There are Pulsifer family connections with the Salem Witch Trials. Some Pulsifer family descendants connect to the Mayflower. My mother, Alberta Jesse Pulsifer, is the daughter of Baxter Chase Pulsifer, who was the son of Chase Pulsifer, the son of Augustus Moses Pulsifer, the son of Dr. Moses Rust Pulsifer. Since you are a California Pulsifer we are probably related. Hope this helps; best wishes Jim McCulloch

Benedict Pulsifer was born Bet. 1635 - 1640 in England, and died 1710 in Ipswich, Essex, Mass.. He married Susanna Waters on February 1673/74 in Ipswich, Essex, Mass., daughter of Richard Waters and Joyce (Rejoice) Plasse.

Includes NotesNotes for Benedict Pulsifer:

Benedict was born in England about 1635. we know he was in America by 1659; but possibly could have arrived a few years before. Around the year 1661, he married his first wife. Unfortunately her name has been lost to history. In 1663 wee have a record of Benedict buying a home and a son born to him. He bought a residence with outhouse, orchards, etc. from Moses Pengry of Ipswich, one of the town deacons; who had obtained the land in 1652 from Richard Schofield, leather dresser for 17 pounds. The home was situated on the intersection of East Street and Hovey Lane. Across from his lot lay what had been the home of John Winthrop Jr.; son of the founder of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Ownership of this property entitled Benedict to the right of pasturage in the domain beyond the "common fence", but the felling of timber or cultivation of the common land was prohibited. In the mid 1600's these lands were held by all householders in common. This system was a vestigal relic of the ancient system of land holding in England and Germany and was naturally reverted to in the necessities of primitive colonial life.by 1664, the idea of permanent individual ownership had gained enough acceptance that the town voted that Plum Island, Hogg Island and Castle Neck be divided amoung those who had rights of commonage, based upon the amount of personal and property tax paid by each individual determined by lot. This right belonged to 203 individuals including Benedict.

Benedict's first wife died at Ipswich, Jul. 16, 1673. It was a common English practice to name the first born daughter after the wife. If this being the case here, then it is likely his first wife's name was Elizabeth. No way of proving this however.

Benedict marries 2nd to Susanna Waters 1674.

His children gave him a good deal of frustration and embarassment. He had to defend them in court and even took one son to court for some wrong committed to him by his son.

During the 1690's the notorious Salem witch trials occured. We can only guess how Benedict reacted to such goings-on. His wife, Susanna, was from Salem, so certainly they were aware of the trials.

In 1700 Benedict was assigned a place on "one of ye short seats" among the elderly in the Ipswich Meeting House and referred to as "Goodman". On Aug. 1, 1709, Benedict conveyed his property to his son, Capt. Joseph Pulcifer, of Boston. Benedict died the following year

HISTORY OF BENEDICT PULSIPHER abt. 1630 – 1695

Benedict Pulsipher had settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts, according to his own statement, by 1659. He was probably married a year or two before coming to this country. He very likely brought his wife and infant son, Benedict II or Junior. We have no record of the birth of the son or of another son, John, but Elizabeth’s birth in 1609 is recorded in the town records of Ipswich. His first wife, of whose maiden name we are ignorant, died at Ipswich 16 July 1673. His son, Mr. William Henry Pulsipher says, “We’re of little help or comfort to his family.” Evidently John moved to Gloucester, where he became a respected member of the family. There he probably supplemented his income as a farmer by occasionally building or helping to build houses for his neighbors. He is styled in one document “Yeoman” and in another “mason”. In the History of Gloucester”, J. J. Babson – 1860, page 130, appears the following:

“John Pulsipher, settled about 1680, according to tradition near a spot still occupied by one if his descendants on the old road leading to Coffin’s Beach (Gloucester). In 1688 he had a piece of land “given to the house where he then lived.” Benedict Jr., proved to be a “roving blade”, according to Mr. William Henry Pulsipher. “We hear,” says Mr. Pulsipher, “of a Benedict Pulsipher engaged in an Indian fight in Maine in 1688. This was probably Benedict Jr. Cotton Mather refers to the incident in his ‘Magnalia Christi Americana’ London 1702. VII, page 63. Benedict, Jr., probably never married. In 1690 he engaged in Sir William Philip’s expedition to Quebec as a member of Captain Abraham Titton’s Company, and it is quite possible that he was killed or taken prisoner in the unfortunate attempt to capture the Canadian stronghold.

“A Compendious History of New England” by Morse and Parrish, page 146, makes a confirmatory reference to this episode.


After the death of his first wife on 16 July 1673, Benedict, Sr. married in the succeeding February, Susan A. Waters of Salem, Massachusetts, who was the fifth daughter of Richard and Joyce Waters. She was born at Salem, Massachusetts 01 Feb 1649. “Benedict Pulsipher, Sr. brought his young wife to Ipswich immediately after his marriage and entered upon what might be termed the second period of his career.” The records show that his young wife was rather vain. She liked to adorn herself. “She, among others, braved the laws in 1675 by appearing in the meeting house with a silk hood and scarf. She and the others were arrested, tried, and fined ten shillings each for yielding to their vanity.”

Benedict Pulsipher was a man of some means. He was also “a man of considerable education” in a period when educated Englishmen were rare.

Late in 1663 or early 1664 he bought a dwelling house with outhouse, orchard, gardens, etc. of Moses Pingry of Ipswich, Massachusetts, which property Pigry had acquired in 1652 of Richard Scofield who came to New England in 1635. This estate was situated on the north of the “Tom River”. Its site is now occupied by a factory. The original deed to this property was either lost or “casually” burned, and on 7 Feb 1667, Pingry made a supplementary deed of the property which he gave Benedict Pulsipher. Benedict was then styled a “planter.”

He added to his estate in 1664. In the same year, 1664, the town of Ipswich granted him a share (No. 55) in the town lands on Plumb Island, Castle Neck, and Hogg Island. He continued to reside at Ipswich, pursuing his occupation as planter or farmer for many years.

The records show the children of Benedict and Susan Pulsipher to be as follows:

  1. Richard 31 May 1675 Mass.
  2. William 12 Dec 1676 Mass.
  3. Susanna 05 Sep 1678 Mass.
  4. Joseph 13 Nov 1680 Mass.
  5. Benjamin 19 May 1683 Mass.
  6. David 27 Sep 1686 Mass.
  7. Jonathan 25 Sep 1687 Mass.
  8. Johanna 25 Sep 1687 Mass.
  9. Susanna 1689 Mass.
  10. Elizabeth 1690 Mass.
  11. Margaret 14 Feb 1693 Mass.

David, the sixth child of Benedict, is the one we are especially concerned about, and his wife Susanna. Their children were all born in Boston, namely:

  1. David 07 May 1708 Mass.
  2. Susanna 19 Nov 1710 Mass.
  3. Margaret 06 Jul 1712 Mass.
  4. Joseph 27 Dec 1713 Mass.
  5. Elizabeth 11 Feb 1717 Mass.
  6. Abigail 27 Nov 1720 Mass.

This David was a sailor of Boston. His wife, Susanna, was licensed to sell strong drinks in Boston in 1727, according to the “Boston Selectmen’s Minutes, 1716 to 1736.” So, if this is our David, born 1708, and Susanna was his mother, he would only be 19 years old when his mother sold strong drinks.

Probably that accounts for his going into Connecticut. Records show that he was a resident of Pomfret, Windham, Connecticut. He married in Pomfret 02 October 1740. Elizabeth Stowell daughter of David Stowell and Patience Herrington, born 21 August 1719, in Newton, Massachusetts.

Their children born in Pomfret were (Information from Pro. Ct. Record 9):

  1. Mary 29 Jun 1744
  2. Ester 13 Mar 1747
  3. John 08 Jul 1749
  4. David 06 Oct 1751
  5. Elizabeth 12 Jun 1754
  6. David 29 Sep 1756
  7. Ebenezer 1758

Mary married John Harwood and died in 1786; John married Elizabeth Dutton; the first David died 06 November 1754; Elizabeth married Captain John H. Fuller; David (2) died 14 January 1835; Ebenezer married (1) Priscilla Russell, (2) Unity Reed.

David and Elizabeth moved to Ware River, Massachusetts then in 1766 to Rockingham, Windham, Vermont. The history of Rockingham states that he came “with wife” Elizabeth and five children. He settled on the Meadows opposite South Charleson, New Hampshire, and later moved to Rockingham village.

He built the first log cabin “Inn” in the town, located on the site of the dwelling now standing next, west of the old church. Town meetings were held in his home, also church meetings previous to the building of the first meeting or “town” house.

When the first church was organized in October 1773, David and Elizabeth Pulsipher were among the first nineteen members and later David joined with others in presenting the town with the land which, for a century and a third, has been occupied by the old meeting house and the burying ground adjoining.

Directly after the battle of Lexington, tidings of the event were sent to Rockingham, as well as all surrounding towns and David with his son, John joined a band of Patriots gathered on both sides of the Connecticut River and the morning of 21 April 1775 they were assigned to Captain John Marchy’s Company in Colonel James Reed’s Regiment which took an active part in the battle of Bunker Hill. It was believed that David was killed at this battle as he never returned home and his fate was never known. He may have died of disease in the war. His wife and family remained in the old log cabin several years keeping it as a Public Tavern.

After the first church, organized in 1773, was discontinued in 1839, the Record Book as well as the Communion Service, the table cloth and one napkin were preserved by members of the Pulsipher family to whom much credit is given for their faithful care.

John Pulsipher, (father of Zera) was born 08 July 1749. Married in Rockingham to Elizabeth Dutton, who was born 18 December 1751 in Lunnenburg, Massachusetts. She was the daughter of Thomas Dutton and his first wife, Mary Hill. She was a descendant of the Thomas Dutton and his wife, Susanna, who settled in Reading, Massachusetts, and were the fourth great-grandparents of our “Beloved Prophet, Joseph Smith.” This same Dutton family are said to be the family of Duttons who came to Chester, England, in 1066 with William the Conqueror.

Elizabeth joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1832. She was then living with her son, Zera, and his family. Her husband having died some years previously. He died in the Revolutionary War, with his father at the Battle of Bunker Hill. He was one of the founders of the first Baptist Church in Rockingham, Vermont in 1789.

John Pulsipher, a grandson of John and Elizabeth, states in his history of his own life, that his grandmother, Elizabeth, died on 02 December 1838, of persecutions in a land of liberty.

The Early Pulsipher Family History Research and Arranging by Adah Mackleprang Wood

Every authority consulted agrees that Benedict or Benedictus, the first of the name in America, was the founder of the family in this country who settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts, in or before 1659. At a court held in Ipswich, Sept. 24, 1678, Benedict Pulsiphar, as he spelled his name, deposed that he had been in the town of Ipswich nineteen years. No record that the writer has examined gives the exact date of Benedict Pulsipher's arrival in this country. Perhaps he upon arrival, went immediately to Ipswich. If so he must have reached that place in 1659. According to Savage's Genealogical Dictionary, Benedict was known to be in New England in 1662. If Benedict or Benedictus arrived in America in 1659, he was here one year before Charles II was (made King of England and ten years after Charles I was) beheaded at Whitehall, England, Jan 30, 1648, ten years before Benedict came to this country. I am at pains to mention this, because it has been claimed by some that Benedict changed his name when he reached America from Pulford, a well known English family name, to Pulsiphar, according to his spelling, in order to escape the emissaries of Charles II, whom it was thought Benedict feared, as Benedict was a Puritan in England and was perhaps connected with Cromwell's army that was responsible for the beheading of Charles I.

History of Newton, Massachusetts, says that Benedict bought land in Ipswich in 1655. So, if he bought land in Massachusetts in 1655, he must have come soon after Charles I was beheaded.

There existed in ancient times in Florence, Italy, a family bearing the name of Pulci (pronounced Pulchee), undoubtedly derived from the Latin word "pulcher" meaning beautiful. This family included merchants, artisans, and sailors, as well as literary men, of the latter of whom the famous Luigi Pulchi was the best renowned example.

During the great spread of Florentine commerce, a member of this family, at about the time of the Norman conquest, either for commercial reasons or because attracted as other learned men of foreign birth were by the brilliant court of William, settled in England.

Bearing in mind the Latin meaning of the Florentine name of Pulchi, our ancestor being especially distinguished for good looks, his friends and acquaintances called him Pulci-vir - "handsome man". The middle syllable of his name was speedily Anglicized, methathosis took place respecting the "vir" for euphony, and so in due course of time the name "Pulcipher" or "Pulsipher" (handsome man) was handed down as a very euphonious and descriptive family name.

The same authority says:

"If we assume that the name is of Anglo-Saxon origin, then it could readily be derived from the Anglo-Saxon verb "pullian" from which our verb "pull" or "pulls" is derived, and from the obsolete Anglo-Saxon preposition or adverb "infere", which means "together".

They have also been known as patriotic citizens. It has been said that fifteen Pulsiphers served in the war of the Revolution, but prior to that time Benedict (2) Pulsipher Junior served in Captain Abraham Tilton's Company, which took part in the expedition of Quebec in 1690. Several Pulsiphers served in the War of 1812 and the Mexican War, and a large number served in the War of the Rebellion. The Line of Descent from Benedict

Benedict Pulsipher had settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts, according to his own statement, by 1659. He was probably married a year or two before coming to this country. He very likely brought his wife and infant son, Benedict II, or Junior. We have no record of the birth of the son, or of another son, John, but Elizabeth's birth in 1669 is recorded in the town records of Ipswich. His first wife, of whose maiden name we are ignorant, died at Ipswich July 16, 1673. His son, Mr. William Henry Pulsipher, says, "We're of little help or comfort to his family." Evidently, John moved to Gloucester, where he became a respected member of the family. There he probably supplemented his income as a farmer by occasionally building or helping to build houses for his neighbors. He is styled in one document "Yeomen" and in another "mason".

In the "History of Gloucester", J.J. Babson - 1860, page 130, appears the following:

"John Pulcipher, or Pulsevar, settled about 1680, according to tradition near a spot still occupied by one of his descendants on the old road leading to Coffin's Beach (Gloucester). In 1688 he had a piece of land "given to the house where he then lived."

Benedict, Jr., proved to be a "roving blade", according to Mr. William Henry Pulsifer. "We hear, says Mr. Pulsifer, "of a Benedict Pulsephar engaged in an Indian fight in Maine in 1688. This was probably Benedict, Jr. Cotton Mather refers to the incident in his 'Magnalia Christi Americana' London 1702, Bood Vii, page 63. Benedict, Jr. probably never married. In 1690 he engaged in Sir William Philip's expedition to Quebec as a member of Captain Abraham Tilton's Company, and it is quite possible that he was killed or taken prisoner in the unfortunate attempt to capture that Canadian stronghold."

"A Compendious History of New England" by Morse and Parrish, page 246, makes a confirmatory reference to this episode.

After the death of his first wife, July 16, 1673, Benedict, Sr. married in the succeeding February, Susan A. Waters of Salem, Massachusetts, who was the fifth daughter of Richard and Joyce Waters. She was born at Salem, Mass., Feb 1, 1649. "Benedict Pulsephar, Senior, brought his young wife to Ipswich immediately after his marriage and entered upon what might be termed the second period of his career." The records show that his young wife was rather vain. She liked to adorn herself. "She, among others, braved the laws in 1675 by appearing in the meeting house with a silk hood and scarf. She and the others were arrested, tried, and fined ten shillings each for yielding to their vanity."

Benedict Pulcifer was a man of some means. He was also "a man of considerable education" in a period when educated Englishmen were rare.

Late in 1663, or early in 1664, he bought a dwelling house with outhouse, orchard, gardens, etc. of Moses Pingry of Ipswich, Mass., which property Pigry acquired in 1652 of Richard Scofield, who came to New England in 1635. This estate was situated on north of the "Tom River". It's site is now occupied by a factory. The original deed to this property was either lost or "casually" burned and on Feb. 7, 1667, Pingry made a supplementary deed of the property which he gave Benedict Pulsipher. Benedict was then styled a "planter".

He added to his estate in 1664. In the same year, 1664, the town of Ipswich granted him a share (No. 55) in t he town lands on Plumb Island, Castle Neck, and Hogg Island. He continued to reside at Ipswich, pursuing his occupation as planter or farmer for many years.

The records show the children of Benedict and Susan Pulsipher to be as follows:

  1. Richard, born May 31, 1675;
  2. William, born December 12, 1676;
  3. Susannah, bor September 5, 1678;
  4. Joseph, born November 13, 1680;
  5. Benjamin, born My 19, 1683;
  6. David (ours), born September 27, 1685;
  7. Jonathan, born September 25, 1687;
  8. Johanna, born September 25, 1687, twins;
  9. Susanna, born about 1689 (the other one died young);
  10. Elizabeth, born in 1690;
  11. Margaret, born Feb 14, 1693.

David, the sixth child of Benedict, is the one we are especially concerned about, and his wife Susanna. Their children were all born in Boston, namely:

  1. David (ours) born May 7, 1708;
  2. Susannah, born Nov. 19, 1710;
  3. Margaret, born July 6, 1712;
  4. Joseph, born Dec. 27, 1713;
  5. Elizabeth, born Feb. 11, 1717;
  6. Abigail, born Nov. 27, 1720.

This David was a sailor of Boston. His wife Susanna, was licensed to sell strong drinks in Boston in 1727, according to the "Boston Selectmen's Minutes, 1716 to 1736." So if this is our David, born 1708, and Susanna was his mother, he would only be 19 years old when his mother sold strong drinks.

Probably that accounts for him going into Connecticut. Record show that he was a resident of Pomfret, Windham Co., Connecticut. He married in Pomfret, Oct. 2, 1740, Elizabeth Stoel (Stowell) daughter of David Stowell and Patience Herrington, born Aug. 21, 1719, in Newton, Mass.

Their children born in Pomfret were (Information from Pro. Ct. Record 9):

  1. Mary Pulsipher, born June 29, 1744; married John Harwood and died in 1786;
  2. Ester Pulsipher, born Mar. 13, 1747;
  3. John Pulsipher*, born July 8, 1749, and married Elizabeth Dutton;
  4. David Pulsipher, born Oct. 6, 1751, died Nov. 6, 1754;
  5. Elizabeth Pulsipher, born June 12, 1754, married Captain John H. Fuller;
  6. David Pulsipher, born Sept. 29, 1756, died Jan. 14, 1835;
  7. Ebenezer Pulsipher, born in 1758, first wife Priscilla Russell, second wife, Unity Reed.

David and Elizabeth moved to Ware River, Mass., then in 1766 to Rockingham, VT. The history of Rockingham states that he came "with wife" Elizabeth and five children. He settled on the Meadows opposite South Charleson, N.H., and later moved to Rockingham village. He built the first log cabin "Inn" in the town, located on the site of the dwelling now stand next, west of the old church. Town meetings were held in his home, also church meetings previous to the building of the first meeting of "town" house.

When the first church was organized in Oct., 1773, David and Elizabeth Pulsipher were among the first 19 members and later David joined with others in presenting the town with the land which, for a century and a third, has been occupied by the old meeting house and the burying ground adjoining.

Directly after the battle of Lexington, tidings of the event were sent to Rockingham, as well as all surrounding towns and David with his son John*, joined a band of Patriots gathered on both sides of the Connecticut River, and the morning of Apr. 12, 1775, they were assigned to Captain John Mercy's Company in Colonel James Reed's Regiment which took an active part in the battle of Bunker Hill. It was believed that David was killed at this battle as he never returned home and his fate was never known. He may have died of disease in the war. His wife and family remained in the old log cabin several years keeping it as a Public Tavern.

After the first church, organized in 1773, was discontinued in 1839, the Record Book as well as the Communion Service, the table cloth and one napkin were preserved by members of the Pulsipher family to whom much credit is given for their faithful care.

John Pulsipher (the father of Zerah) was born July 8, 1749. Married in Rockingham, Elizabeth Dutton, who was born Dec. 18, 1751, in Lunnenberg, Mass. She was the daughter of Thomas Dutton and his first wife, Mary Hill. She was the descendent of the Thomas Dutton and his wife Susanna, who settled in Reading, Mass. and were the fourth-great-grandparents of our "Beloved Prophet, Joseph Smith". This same Dutton family are said to be the family of Duttons who came to Chester, Eng., in 1066 with William the Conqueror.

Elizabeth joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday-Saints in 1832. She was then living with her son, Zerah, and his family, her husband having died some years previous. He died in the Revolutionary War, with his father at the Battle of Bunker Hill. He was one of the founders of the first Baptist Church in Rockingham, VT in 1789.

John Pulsipher, a grandson of John and Elizabeth, states in his history of his own life, that his grandmother, Elizabeth, died on Dec. 2, 1838, of persecutions in a land of liberty.


30 September 2013 · 0 Comments

In my Crandall family records that were given to me by my mother- from her mother Fern Ravenscraft Crandall- I found a typed history of the Pulsipher family. The title page is missing and so I do not know who wrote it. When I checked the dates and names with this part of our family line they seemed to match- so I will share here the portion of this record that applies to Benedictus Pulsipher:

Benedict or Benedictus Pulsipher was the founder of the family in America, settling in Massachusetts in or before the year 1659. He was a Puritan in England who some believe came to America to escape persecution. Being of Italian descent, the family name of Pulsipher was bestowed upon some unknown ancestor being especially distinguished for good looks, meaning in Latin “handsome man”. However, I’m afraid that characteristic took a path down a different genealogical line or perhaps petered out.

We are all concerned to one degree or another about our appearance and dress. It was no different then. After the death of his first wife, Benedict married a younger woman, Suzanna Waters. The records show that his young wife was rather vain. She liked to adorn herself. She, among others, braved the laws in 1675 by appearing in the meeting house with a silk hood and scarf. She and the others were arrested, tried and fined ten shillings each for yielding to their vanity.

view all 19

Benedict Pulsifer's Timeline

1639
1639
England, United Kingdom
1639
Ipswich, Essex, Massachusetts, USA
1663
1663
Age 24
Ipswich, Essex, Massachusetts, USA
1667
1667
Age 28
Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts, United States
1669
December 4, 1669
Age 30
Ipswich, Essex, Massachusetts, USA
1675
May 31, 1675
Age 36
Ipswich, Essex, Massachusetts, USA
1676
December 12, 1676
Age 37
Ipswich, Essex County, Massachusetts, United States
1678
September 5, 1678
Age 39
Ipswich, Essex, Massachusetts, USA
1680
November 13, 1680
Age 41
Ipswich, Essex, Massachusetts, USA